Thursday, 6 April 2017

Service Dog Training: Day 4

Good news first.  We talked to the trainers and I was worrying too much about whether or not Dave's doubts would affect their decision.  And they don't see any problem with us travelling to Calgary with Icon and Alex.

We started off the day with a game of Kong toss.  Icon did very well with responding to our voice commands.  We did some practice with sit and stay before tossing.  He's very good with "drop it" and doesn't growl even if we take the Kong right from his mouth.  He's just happy to play.  Although, we have discovered that he usually gets tired of the game before we do. 

 We're learning more about Icon's personality as the days go on.  He's very good at anticipating patterns and our actions, which is helpful in some situations and not helpful in others.  He's eager to please and attentive.  He's low-energy, and likes to take cat-naps whenever he can.

 Today was an outdoor activity day.  We went to a park and practiced going around the equipment.

 Icon had his first greet, where a child came up to him.  The kid was about 18 months old and started running at us determinedly.  I got Icon into a down position just as the kid reached us and the kid immediately lay down (face up) in front of Icon.  Icon gave a little sniff and the kid giggled and then the mom caught up to us and told her child that this was a working dog and we needed to leave him alone.

We also practiced going up and down stairs.  And we got a couple of opportunities to use our new collapsible bowl.  It worked better than I thought it might have. 

We finished off by practicing with the long lead.  Icon was the best in the class, staying patiently until we called him and then coming back to us.

We had a quiet evening while some of the other families met with their puppy raisers.  We'll meet ours in June.

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